Two years into the pandemic, Black people in the U.S. still face wide health disparities in the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the economic and social fallouts, compared to other racial groups.
The new report from the Black Coalition Against COVID comes as hospitalization rates for Black Americans were recently the highest they’ve been since the pandemic’s start.
“As we reflect on two years of lived experience and myriad data sources, we know COVID-19’s toll on Black Americans is ongoing,” Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, the director of the Office for Health Equity Research at Yale University, said.
“This report draws attention to the continued disproportionate burden experienced by members of the Black community and will help guide advocacy and policy efforts to address these inequities — both during the current pandemic and beyond,” she said.
The researchers also highlight that Black Americans are facing significant behavioral health challenges as a result of COVID-19. Black Americans are more likely to report experiencing anxiety and depression because of the pandemic, and substance use disorders have also increased.
One study cited in the report found that opioid overdoses increased among Black people in Philadelphia by as much as 52.1% between January 2019 and June 2020. Overdoses decreased 24% among white people in that same time frame.
Read more at NPR.org.